The Laurie Baker International School of Habitat Studies (Labishas), an autonomous institution under the Kerala State Nirmithi Kendra (Kesnik), has embarked on a project to popularise the use of mud as a construction material in housing.

The project, which seeks to integrate traditional mud architecture with modern technology, was inaugurated on the Kesnik campus here on Wednesday. Minister for Housing Benoy Viswom laid the foundation stone for a mud house on the campus.

The walls of the house will be built using a mixture of cement and earth containing more than 20 per cent mud. This, according to engineers at Kesnik, will lend strength and stability to the building. The roof of the mud house will be made of iron, coconut wood and sheets with tiles on top. The floor will have terracotta tiles.

Up to 50 per cent of people all over the world dwell in mud houses.

“Mud is a good insulator and eco-friendly material. It is preferred because it results in cooler interiors. A mud house costs 50 per cent less than other houses,” says project coordinator, S.Radhakrishnan.

The model house on the Kesnik campus is expected to come up in two months.